Sex in the Garden: Zucchini Blossoms 101

 So I am guessing that the title of this post struck your curiosity. Well get your mind out of the gutter.  This is a lesson in zucchini blossoms. 😉  One of the first things that most beginner gardeners grow is zucchini.  They are pretty easy to grow and yield lots of fruit with very little work.  I can remember the first time I ever saw zucchini blossoms appearing on my young little zucchini plants. I got so excited and start thinking, “wow this gardening stuff is easy”.  So I watched the blossoms grow over the next week or so and there were many of them appearing now. More and more each day! Then one morning,  I went out to check on my little darlings and I was shocked to see a bunch of the beautiful blossoms lying on the ground.  Who could have murdered my precious little blossoms and then left the blossoms laying there as if to mock me. I was furious! I took to the internet searching for answers and scheming about how I would surely “do away” with whatever had done this terrible act.   The truth is, after scouring the internet and talking to the owner of my local garden store, I came to find out that this is something that just naturally happens to the male blossoms.  What?  They just fall off and die?  Yup that’s right.

Let me give you a quick little lesson on male vs female zucchini flowers.  When a zucchini plant starts to produce flowers, it produces mostly male flowers.  This way when they females arrive they will be ready to pollinate them.  Once the male flowers have pollinated the females or have hung around for a while with no action from the females, they fall off and die.  LOL sounds a little like human males (just kidding)! Leaving a stem that looks like the flower was just snapped off. The female flowers that were pollinated will go on the become beautiful zucchini.

Notice the female blossoms and the bare male stems!

So there you have it.  A quick little lesson on zucchini blossoms. I hope this was helpful!  Happy gardening!

Note: you can see that string I am using to tie them to the post. These are growing vertically.  They are finally starting to get a little height (4-5 inches).  Be patient. It takes them a while to get going.

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2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Harold Duncan said,

    I would like to know what determines whether a plant produces a female or male flower. I frequently have all males or all females at unsynchronized times.


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